Solemnity of Pentecost (b)
This Week’s Liturgy Calendar.
Send forth your Spirit, O Lord
And renew the face of the earth.
Sunday 20th May: Solemnity of Pentecost. (B)
Today is Pentecost Sunday, a day which is both and end and a beginning. It is the official end of the Easter Season. The Easter Candle is removed from its prominent place in the sanctuary to be beside the Baptismal Font. It is now only lit during the celebrations of Funerals and Baptisms.
Today also marks the great beginning of the Church, the day the Holy Spirit first came to the confused and frightened disciples to inspire them to go out and preach the Good News.
In the first reading, from the Acts of the Apostles, Pentecost is described. St. Luke describes the descent of the Holy Spirit on the apostles and the effect it had on them.
In the second reading, from the first letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians, we are reminded that the Holy Spirit gives different gifts to different people for the good of the Church, the Body of Christ.
In the Gospel, from St. John, we hear how the risen Christ gives the gift of the Holy Spirit to his disciples and inaugurates the mission of the Church.
END OF THE EASTER SEASON
Ordinary Cycle of the Year (b)
Weekdays – Year 2.
Today we revert to the Ordinary Cycle for weekdays of year 2.
Monday 21st May: Monday in the seventh week of the year.
We continue this week with the readings from the Letter of St. James. He contrasts, in this section, the harmony that wisdom and the lack of harmony from jealousy.
The Gospel passages come from St. Mark. Today we read of Jesus healing a man who is possessed. He demands faith and trusting prayer, otherwise we are closed to God’s action and grace.
Tuesday 22nd May: Tuesday in the seventh week of the year.
James reminds us that Christians are not perfect but must strive for perfection.
Jesus foretells his passion, death and resurrection for the second time but the disciples still do not understand. Do we? Do we understand the cross when it is placed on our shoulders?
Wednesday 23rd May: Wednesday in the seventh week of the year.
James reminds us we need to make a total conversion to God and his ways. It is to be a conversion of the whole of our being.
It can be very easy to ridicule the good done by others if they do not belong. Jesus appreciated whatever good done by anyone whether one of his followers or not.
Thursday 24th May: Thursday in the seventh week of the year.
A strong warning is ut before us in today’s reading from James. It is aimed particularly at those who gained their wealth and riches by exploiting and defrauding others. Their wealth will not serve them and will disappear.
In a series of not too well connected words of the Lord to his disciples, we notice for example, his great concern for the ‘little ones’ – the ordinary follower who is not an expert or well versed in doctrine and theology.
Friday 25th May: Friday in the seventh week of the year.
We are warned by James in this section to leave judging to God. We are also encouraged to use proper speech.
For Christ, marriage is meant by the Father to be indissoluble since it mirrors God’s love for each one of us. His love is faithful and permanent. Married love is to be the same.
Saturday 26th May: Memorial of St. Philip Neri.
Philip Neri was born in Florence in 1515. In his late teens he moved to Rome where he spent to years praying about his life and the way forward. His only practical work during this time was teaching his host’s two sons. He began working with the people whose faith was at a low ebb and was ordained in 1551. He became known as a great confessor. He was helped by a group of other priests and this was the start of the Oratorians. He worked hard until his death in 1595.